Not every divorce has to be contentious and/or cost a lot of money
John Hayes from VTH-Law believes that divorces that get contentious and/or expensive fall into three categories;
1. A divorce involving significant assets, often, but not always, with a business or businesses assets in need of valuation that requires a certain amount of investigation;
2. A divorce with complicated custody disputes; and/or
3. A divorce where the parties become very emotionally connected to issues.
“When a couple decides to get a divorce, the best thing they can do to avoid excessive legal fees is to set aside their differences and emotions to focus on a resolution that puts them in the best possible position, under the law, to move on with their life,” Hayes said. “When people fight over every detail, the legal fees start to increase significantly. It is easy to get emotional when getting a divorce but keeping things in perspective will save both parties time, money and the emotional expense that it entails. Having the right attorney to help keep things in perspective is crucial to that battle as opposed to an attorney that is focused just on the fight.”
People sometimes refer to a “quickie divorce” in reference to a divorce that doesn’t take long or cost a lot of money. This type of divorce is possible if both parties are able to set aside their emotions and discuss the relevant issues going into a divorce or when meeting with an attorney. When it comes to personal property issues, Hayes suggest “sitting down with your spouse to resolve these issues in advance, arguing about dining room tables and couches can really exacerbate your legal fees to the point that the amount you pay an attorney to litigate the issue could end up costing the equivalent or more of whatever item you are arguing about. If a couple can work on this list together and figure out the majority of the details before they hire a lawyer, the hours a lawyer spends on the case will be minimal compared to if they both hire lawyers and spend unnecessary time fighting over everything.”
Finding a lawyer that offers a free consultation is extremely helpful in trying to control the cost of a divorce. “I offer a free 30-minute consultation. In that consultation, a client can ask me questions and I can give them a game plan on how to proceed and what to expect throughout the process.”
Although many divorces are costly and emotionally draining, the truth is they don’t have to be. If you and your spouse are reasonable with each other and are able to work out a lot of the details without getting emotional and you have an attorney that helps keep things in perspective relative to your ultimate goals, you may be surprised at how effective your legal fees are spent in placing you in the best possible position moving forward with your life after divorce.